tv Democracy Now LINKTV February 7, 2017 3:00pm-4:01pm PST
02/07/17 02/07/17 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from pacifica, this is democracy now! >> betsy devos nomination is very personal to many people who live in michigan because betsy devos is from michigan. and her vision of education and her actions have, unfortunately, played a major role in undermining our public schools. amy: the democrats launch a 24-hour protest on the senate floor in a last ditch effort to block the nomination of trump's
education secretary. but unless a third republican votes against betsy devos, she be 50-50, will horsing vice president michael the deciding vote. we will speak to california congresswoman maxine waters about devos and why she is already talking about the need to impeach donald trump. >> your words, your actions have shown us that you don't respect us, that both you and all of your nominees for your cabinet us and are dangerous for all of our families. amy: plus, we will take a look at donald trump's foreign russia tom iran to mexico. pres. trump: we are taken advantage of by every nation in the world virtually. it is not going to happen anymore. it is not going to happen anymore. amy: we will speak to harvard
professor stephen walt author of the recent piece, "trump has already blown it." and we will also talk to an iranian-american doctoral student who has just returned to school new york after being blocked from reentering the country thanks to trump's muslim ban. all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. on capitol hill, senate democrats are in the middle of a 24-hour debate seeking to delay the confirmation of billionaire betsy devos for education secretary. devos is perhaps trump's most contested pick among a group of controversial cabinet nominees, who are overwhelmingly white male millionaires and billionaires. devos is a longtime backer of charter schools and vouchers for private and religious schools. she and her husband have also invested in a student debt collection agency that does business with the education department. on monday, senate democrats took to the floor of the u.s. senate to begin the 24-hour debate in
efforts to convince a third republican to join them and vote against devos, which would sink her confirmation. this is washington senator patty murray. >> madam president, this nomination iss dead even right now, on the razor's edge. 50 senators, democrats and republican, will vote to reject betsy devos. in we need just one more republican to join us, to stand on the side of students and parents and public education in america and say no to betsy devos. amy: last week, two republican lawmakers -- senators susan collins and lisa murkowski -- announced plans to vote against devos, leaving senate republicans one vote short of confirming her. if the senate vote is 50-50, vice president mike pence would then cast the deciding vote, an event that has never happened to any other presidential nominee in history. parents and teachers have been flooded the senate phone system calling republican lawmakers to demand they oppose her
confirmation. nearly all democratic senators are expected to also vote against the nominations of tom price to head the department of health and human services, jeff sessions for attorney general, andrew puzder for labor secretary, and steven mnuchin for treasury secretary -- which the "washington post" call "historic rebuke of a first-term president's cabinet selections." we'll have more on the ongoing senate debate over betsy devos after headlines. a federal appeals court will hear arguments today on whether to r restore president donald trump's executive order banning people from iraq, syria, iran, sudan, libya, somalia, and yemen from entering the united states, the hearing is to review an order by a lower court judge to put trump's directive on hold. on monday, more than 100 companies, including text giants apple, facebook, google, microsoft, netflix, twitter, and uber, filed augments with the coursing they oppose the ban. top former officials including john kerry and madeleine
albright also filed documents with the court monday saying they oppose the ban. over the last two weekends, tens of thousands of people have protested in nationwide demonstrations against trump's muslim ban. in one of the latest about 20 rabbis were arrested monday night blocking the street near trump tower in manhattan in protest of the ban. president donald trump falalsely claimed monday during a speech to u.s. central command at macdill air force base in flororida that the media is intentionally covering up terrorist attacks. pres. trump: you have seen what happened in paris and nice -- all over europe, it is happening . it has gone to a point where it is not even being reported. in many cases, the very, very dishonest press does not want to report it. amy: the claims appear to be part of a wider push by the white house to increase fear about potential, and even imaginary terrorist attacks in , order to justify president trump's crackdown on immigration, including his
muslim ban. later on monday after pressure from media outlets, the white house released a list of what it claims are 78 terrorist attacks since 2014 that it says have not received sufficient coverage. many of the attacks on the list caused no fatalities and almost all were carried out outside the united states. the list includes attacks that received such an onslaught of media attention, they are still recognized by only one word, such as "nice" or "orlando." the list also included multiple misspellings, including misspelling the name of san bernardino. in response, cal 20 congressman pete aguiar tweeted -- not "you cannot even spell san bernardino, but you exploit our community to justifyfy your musm ban ?"meanwhile, new information meanwhile new informrmation has , emerged showing that counselor to the president kellyanne conway has repeatedly made false claims about a non-existent terrorist attack called the bowling green massacre. conway's comments first sparked controversy after a february 2nd
interview with msnbc's chris matthews, in which she attempted to justify president trump's muslim ban by citing a terrorist attack in bowling green, kentucky, which never happened. >> i bet it is brain of information to people that president obama had a six-month ban on iraqi refugee program after two iraqis came here to this country were radicalized and were the masterminds behind the bowling green massacre. most people do not know that because it did not get covered. amy: after widespread criticism, conway said she misspoke when she said "massacre," and that she intended to refer to the case of two iraqi men living in bowling green who were arrested in 2011 on charges of having attempted to send money and weapons to al-qaeda in iraq. their arrests led the obama administration to implement a more extensive screening process for iraqi refugees, but not to impose a ban on iraqi resettlement. however, it's now clear that conway did not misspeak at all, as video and quotes of her making the same claims in two previous interviews have surfaced. in an interview with cosmopolitan on january 29, she
falsely claimed -- "two iraqi nationals came to this country, joined isis, traveled back to the middle east to get trained and refine their terrorism skills, and come back here and were the masterminds behind the bowling green massacre of taking innocent soldiers' lives away." this is not true. on that same day, conway did an interview with tmz in which she made the same false claim. obama and the congress who identified d these seven countries. president trump is just following -- president obama divinity refugee program for six months and no one covered it. i think nobody noticed. he did that because i, ison, there were two iraqis who came here, got radicalized, joined isis, the were the masterminds behind the bowling green attack on our brave soldiers. amy: senior adviser to the democratic national committee zac petkanas said in response -- "the trump administration was so desperate to sell their increasingly unpopular and likely illegal anti-muslim ban that they actually made up a terrorist attack to scare people into acceptance." media watchdogs have called on
cable networks to stop booking kellyanne conway for interviews. in britain, speaker of the commons john bercow says he will refuse to invite donald trump to address the british parliament during trump's upcoming state visit, citing trump's racism and sexism. >> after the imposition of the migrant ban by president trump, i am even more strongly opposed to an address by president trump in westminster hall. that ourry strongly opposition to racism and to sexism, and our support for equality before the law and an independent judiciary, are hugely important considerations in the house of commons. amy: more than 1.8 million brits have also signed a petition seeking to stop trump's state visit entirely, arguing -- "he should not be allowed to make an official state visit
because it would cause embarrassment to her majesty the queen." the british parliament is slated to debate the petition on february 20. back in the u.s., new england patriots tight end martellus bennett says he will not visit the white house with the rest of his super bowowl winning team because of his opposition n to dodonald trump. presidident trump p has acknowld his plans to dismantle the dodd frank financial reforms are inspired, in part, by a desire to help his banking friends. dodd frank is a set of financial reforms implemented after the 2008 financial crisis. this is s president trtrump speg at a dinner that i included jp morgan chase ceo jamieie dimon n frfriday. pres. trump: and to do what we have to do in terms of regulation -- we have some of the bankers here. or is nobody better to tom udall. frank then jamie. we expect to be e getting a lot out of dodd frank. they cannot get any money becaususe the banks won't let tm
first lady melania trump is suing the owner of the media outlet the daily mail, over an article that falsely reported melania once worked for an escort service. the lawsuit, which seeks $150 million in damages, claims the article hurt melania's chances at making millions of dollars by selling a brand of beauty anand fashion products while she is "one of the most photographed women in the world." her lawyer is charles harder, who also represented hulk hogan in his $140 million lawsuit against gawker, which caused gawker to shut down. president george w. bush's white house ethics counselor richard painter told the "washington post" the lawsuit appears to suggest melania trump sought to profit from her role as first lady, saying -- "there has never been a first lady of the united states who insinuated that she intended to make a lot of money because of the 'once-in-a-lifetime' opopportunity of being first lady." in a shocking new report on syria, amnesty international says as many as 13,000 people
have been hanged in a syrian government military prison between 2011 and 2015. amnesty calls the hangings part of a "deliberate policy of extermination." the group says the majority of the 13,000 people hanged were civilians opposed to the assad regimeme. this is amnesty international's lynn maalouf. >> the new findings in this report are about a systematic campaign of mass hangings, whereby every week,k, usually on mondays and wednesdays, groups between 20 to 50 detainees would be taken from their cells, told the would be transferred t to civilianan detentions, but instd of that, they were taken to a cell in another building where they would be hanged. amy: the israeli parliament has approved a highly contentious bill to retroactively legalize jewish-only settlements built on private palestinian land.
its passage was celebrated by far right politicians who called monday an "historic day for the settlement movement." the legislation is uniformly opposed by palestinians, and is highly divisive within israeli politics. israel's attorney general calls the legislation unconstitutional and a violation of international law. th is o oosition l leader isaac herzog. to thist give your hand and saying all that threatens to destroy israeli democracy. israel's international standing threatens id of commanders and threatens leaders of the state in senenng completete opposition to the opinion of the attorney general. amy: and breaking news from afghanistan, at least 19 people having killed in a suicide bombing outside the supreme court building in the capital kabul. at least 40 more people were wounded. the death toll may rise. no one has come responsibility for the attacks so far. and here in new york city, high
school and college students are planning a walk out today to protest president trump and his executive order seeking to ban people from seven majority muslim nations from entering the united states. it's the latest in a series of student walkouts and protests nationwide to oppose trump's immigration crackdown. in recent weeks, students have also held mass demonstrations demanding their universities become sanctuary campuses, calling on the administration to refuse to cooperate with t tru's plans to speed up deportations. and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. juan: and i'm juan gonzalez. welcome to all l of our listenes and d viewers from around the country and around the world. the senate is scheduleled to hod a full vote today on the confirmation of donald trump's nominee for education secretary, billionaire betsy devos. devos is perhaps trump's most contested pick among a group of controversial cabinet nominees. devos is a longtime backer of charter schools and vouchers for private and religious schools. she and her husband have also
invested in a student debt collection agency that does business with the education department. on senate democrats took to the monday, floor of the u.s. senate to begin 24-hour protest opposing her appointment. this is michigan senate democrat debbie stabenow. devos' nomination is very personal to many people who live in michigan because betsy .evos is from michigan and her vision of education and her actions have, unfortunately, played a major role in undermining our public schools. families all across our state can tell the story of her work with michigan schools firsthand because they have seen it firsthand. they have lived it firsthand. and they all say the same thing -- democrats, republicans, independents, people who live in cities that are big and small,
parents and teachers and principals and community leaders across the state -- overwhelmingly, they have told me that betsy devos should not be our next secretary of education. juan: last week, two republican lawmakers, senators susan collins and lisa murkowski, announced plans to vote against devos, leaving senate republicans one vote short of confirming her. if the senate vote i is 50-50,0, vice president mike pence would then cast the deciding vote, an event that has never happened to any y other presidential nominee in history. amy: if only one more republican senator decides to vote against her, betsy devos' confirmation will be rejected. for more on devos and other nominees in the trump cabinet, as well as a call for impeachment, we are joined by congresswoman maxine waters of los angeleles. welcomome to democracy now! can you start off by talking about what is happening with
this -- with betsy devos and why you are opposed? >> certainly. i am delighted to be here with you this morning. i started talking about betsy devos when i was at the women's march. wase of his nominees, one jeff sessions, one was betsy devos, and the other was steven mnuchin because they stood out as unqualified, unfit, and should not be heading these important agencies of government. betsy devos has no experience domino background. she never attended public school herself. her children never attended public school. she has never served on a school board, never taught. she has never done anything except make big donations to trump and others. so this billionaire want to be teacher is now in the position
where there is a big fight going on in the senate. and it looks as if it is a 50-50 -- it is a split. , rather,, the tie would have to be broken by the vice president. so unless the democrats can get a third vote, she may end up being the secretary of education -- which would be a shame. she does not care about public education. she is into charter schools and privatization of education. all around this country, educators are alarmed. you know, we have parents who are against this domination and against her becoming the education secretary. ajust hope that they can get third republican to join with the democrats to stop her from becoming the education secretary. juan: conongressman waters, in r
hearings, she really showed remarkable lack of understanding of some of the basic issues in education, even in thehe "detrot free press" claimed she was not qualified for the job and she was actually more a lobbyist. i want to go to s senator elizabeth warrenen speakining on monday on the floor to oppose the nomination of betsy devos. she talkeked about what h happed atat her confirmation hearing. >> during her confirmation hearining, i gave her the opportunity to show she is at least serious about standing up for students. i asked her asa, straightforward questions about her commitment to protecting students and taxpayers from fraud by these shady for-profit colleges. her response was shocking. she refused to commit to use the departments many tools and resources to keep students from getting cheated when fraudulent colleges break the law.
and in her responses to my written questions, she even refused to commit to doing what the law reqequires by canceling the loans of students who have been cheated by lawbreaking colleges. in educatioion secretary who is unwilling to cutut off federal d to colleges that break the law -- chief students would be cheat students would be a disaster for both students and taxpayers. juan: that was senator elizabeth warren. cocongresswoman waters, do you have any expectation or hope this nomination can be derailed with one more republican vote? >> well, i certainly hope so. and i appreciate those questions that were asked by senator warren. both of us have worked very hard to try and get rid of these privatate post secondary schools that are ripping off the taxpayers and the students. we were very successful in the work we did with corinthian, but
there are many more out there for far too long who have been receiving taxpayer money by not providing any real education or career opportunities for these students who sign up for these schools -- many of them are recruited from welfare lines and housing projects. they target the poorest of students. they get them to sign on the dodotted line to get the student loans. they take that money, and many of them do nothing. and when the students end up coming out of these schools, they cannot get jobs. they cannot pay back the loans. and they're basically put in a very difficult situation for many, many years, not being able to rent or live in public housing -- the kinds of things they're prohibited from doing because they have not been able to pay the loans back. yes, she is a disaster.
i am so hopeful they can get this third vote. i know that there are republicans who know she is not qualified. some of them may be a bit intimidated by the president and do not want to cross him at this point, but if they care about the students, if they really care about education, they will do that. they will step up to the plate and they will join with the other two republicans and the democrats and deny her this confirmation. amy: compass member waters, i would ask about treasury secretary nominee steven mnuchin. turn his confirmation hearing last month, the former goldman defended himself against accusations he used a tax haven in the cayman islands in order to avoid paying taxes. >> let me just be clear again. i did not use the cayman island entity in any way to avoid taxes for myself. i paid u.s. taxes on all of that income, ok? from was no benefit to me
the cayman entity. as i said, the cayman entity was set up to accommodate nonprofit and pension funds that want to invest through offshore in a certain number -- don amy: steve mnuchin as deep ties on wall street, includining working asaa partner for goldman sasachs whee his father alslso worked. mnuchihin's hedge fufund also pd a role in the housing crisis, after itcooped u up the failinig california bank indymac in 2008. under mnuchin's ownership, indymac foreclosed on 36,000 families, particularly elderly residents trapped in reverse mortgages. he was accused of running a foreclosure machine. the bank, which was renamed onewest, was also accused of racially discriminatory lending practices. in 2015, mnuchin sold the bank for $3.4 billion -- $1.8 billion more than he bouought it for. during an appearance on cnbc, he was asked about onewest bank allegedly violating the fair housing act by redlining. >> let me tell you, one of the
most crowdwd aspects of my carer was buying inindymac during the financial crisis. we bought it from the government in a highly competitive six-month auction. we saved a lot of jobs and we created a lot of opportunities for corporate loans. one aspect of that is we bought the worst mortgage portfolio in history of time. linkac was about 30% to what loans. all of the loans that we had to foreclose on, we did not originate those. those were indymac loans. the deal when we merged with cit was the first bank deal to be approved post on frank over $50 billion. we went through one year common period o with the and fed. the same groupscc protested against the deal. the regulators look at it and thought it made sense. amy: that is steven mnuchin. , as s member waters, this is personal from you. your from los angeles. arearotests were in your them are protesting what they call the foreclosure machine.
>> absolutely. i know something about steve mnuchin. as a matter of fact, i was contacted and asked to sit in on some efforts that were being toe by nonprofits to get him make real investments in the community, rather than simply being known as the foreclosure king -- having foreclosed on about 36,000 families and homes. they were asking him to support the work of the nonprofits, and asking him to make up for the problems he had caused in communities with these foreclosures. many of the homes that belonged in his portfolio were not kept up. the grass grew up, the windows were boarded up. theelped to drive down value of other homes in the area. he is guilty of redlining. and not having the bank make loans in minority community's.
he comes with a bad reputation. and just to note, he bought those loans from indymac. he got them, i believe, very cheaply. then made over $1 billion on them. that is quite disturbing. this is what we're going to have . as treasury secretary, he would be the one to convene all of the agencies dealing with financial services under something called fscoc. what are you talking about fdic, occ, or the feds, etc., all of them would be convened regularly the leadership of the treasury. that is not good for this country. i do not think you should have that kind of huge power and responsibility. this is typical of what this president is doing. he is picking from wall street, picking from the financial services industry.
those people who have made a of money, who were responsible for that meltdown that we had with subprime loans. he knows exactly what he is doing. and don't forget, donald trump said he made money during the crisis. i am told he set about teaching students in the so-called trump university how they can make money in such a crisis. juan: congresswoman waters, about the other nominee you mentioned, jeff sessions for attorney general, you are completely opposed his appointment. can you say why? >> yes. jeff sessions come with a reputation, you know, he was not confirmed -- i think when he tried to get confirmed in 1986, he did not get confirmed then because of a racist background. i think he is a throwback. he is still the same jeff sessions now as he was then. i do not think he should be in
the position of being the attorney general of this country , overseeing the civil rights division that has responsibility of making sure that people's civil rights are not violated and moving very aggressively to deal with local police departments. as a matter of fact, he does not believe that the government should have a role dealing with troubled local police departments, like in ferguson where the justice department wentnt in to try and work out te problems that have been brewing for years in that city. but he does not believe that is a role for the justice department. amy: interestingly, they cannot rush ahead for them to be attorney general because if he is confirmed, there would be one less republican senator and they are afraid then betsy devos, they could not get approved, so they have to get her confirmed before they can from senator sessions. maxine waters, you're talking about the impeachment of donald trump.
why? inhere is what i am saying response to questions i'm getting, what can we do? how are we going to put up with him for four more years? i answered by saying, i don't intend to put up with them for four more years. himself,e has defined raised serious questions about whether or not he should be the leader of our country. i am asking that the investigations really look into whether or not, for example come a that was collusion with putin in the kremlin as they hacked into our dnc, as they hacked into our dccc and members of congress. what was going on? certainly, if he was involved, is his president of his campaign was involved with the kremlin, etc., then i think that is grounds for impeachment. so i am saying i am willing to
do everything to get to the bottom of this relationship and what happened. and i certainly think there is no question, if there was collusion, if there was strategizing, if there was planning, if he had knowledge about this hacking, thehen i certainly believe he should be impeached. amy: how to go about investigating this? >> one of the things we're trying to do is try to put pressure on the committees that are now saying they're going to do the investigations. you have the intelligence committee on the senate side and you have one of the house committees talking about doing the investigation. i have put together a concurrent resolution that identifies steps i think they should take and the way they should roll down. so educating the public so that the public can put pressure on these investigations to make sure they are not just whitewashed, that they are real investigations to get at the truth. i think we have to fight and
press very hard in order to get at the truth. and i think it is possible to do that. we cannot think that somehow we can find out what is going on. if in fact they discovered that he was hacking, they can discover other things about him and men of fort and what they were doing. amy: compass woman maxine waters from california, are present in los angeles, they could for joining us. waters represents california's 43rd district and serves as the ranking member of the house committee on financial services. when we come back, a graduate student who was blocked by president trump's muslim ban finally makes it back into the united states. she joins us. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. juan: a federal appeals court will hear arguments today on whether to restore president donald trump's executive order banning people from iraq, syria, iran, sudan, libya, somalia, and yemen from entering the united
states. on monday, more than 100 captives, including apple, facebook, google, microsoft, netflix, twitter, and uber filed documents with the court saying they opposed comes muslim ban. top former o officials including former secretaries of state john kekerry and madeleine albright also filed a document sayining they opposed t the ban. amy: lawyersrs for whingngton ad minnesota filed a brief with a arguing to reininstall the ban. it was temporarily halted when james robards in seattle issued aa nationwidide temporary restrainining ordeder on thehe . >> the courtrt concludes the circumstances s that brought it here today are such that we must intervene to fulfill the judiciary's constitutional role in our government. therefore, the courtrt concludus that entry o othe above-described tro is necessary
in the state's motion is hereby granted. juan: judge robart's ruling sparked multiple outbursts on twitter by president trump, who called robart a so-called judge. robart wasas appointed by president george w. bush and unanimously confirmed by the senate in 2004. one of trump's tweets read -- "just cannot believe a judge would put our country in such peril. if something happens blame him and court system. people pouring in. bad!" over the weekend the department , of homeland security began allowing visa holdlders affected by trump's order to board u.s. bound flights. amy: well, for more, we're joined now by one of the people caught up in trump's immigration ban, saira rafiee. she is a doctoral student enrolled at the cuny graduate center through an f1 visa. rafiee spent winter break visiting her family in her native iran. she was trying to return to new york to school when customs officers told her she could not go back because of the president's exec and of order. we are also joined by hadi
ghaemi, the founder and director of campaign for human rights in iran. we welcome you both to democracy now! describe what happened to you. >> i was at the tehran airport and i was about to check in when i heard donald trump had signed the order. i got on the flight to abu dhabi, but there i was told i cannot get on the flight to new yoyork so i had to stay there fr about 18 hours along with 11 other iranians before we to get on the flight. amy: were you shocked? i think was on wednesday we had heard such an order was going to be signed. i was kind of prepared for that. it was -- the people were shocked because so many people have changed their flights, had changed their plans. they wanted to go back to the u.s. in march, for example, but they had to change their plans
and get on the flight -- findnda flight. they were really shocked and disappointed. i heard so many heartbreaking stories at the airport. then you stayed another david for several days? what happened? >> 18 hours. juan: senior able to get back onto another flight -- >> to tehran. amy: how did you end up coming back? >> on friday, i heard because of the court order in massachusetts , lufthansa airline let people from these seven countries board. so i got on the flight to boston, then when i was on my way here, the o other court ordr was signed. so i went to boston first, then came back. juan: you mentioned you into two
other people at the airport. can you talk about s some of the stors ofof the peoeople that you been on social media talked about as well? >> well, i talked about a friend of mine. she lives here. she wanted to go back to tehran to visit her sister who had cancer, but she had to cancel her flight. on friday, her sister died. juan: so she never got to see her sister? >> no, she didn't. what it want to say, i mean, because the iranians professionals here. some of them are students. they have a louder voice here. i concern is there are so many other people from other countries w who have worst situations and are, for example, fleeing war and they do not have any home to go back to. those people are being denied
entry into this country. disisastrous. i thihink we should focus mororn their ststories. i mean, m my storory is not a gd example of what people are going through. amy: i want to turn to fox host bill o'reilly's super bowl interview with president trump. gorsuch, that rollout went very y smoothly. , not so much.al pres. trump:p: i think it was vy smooth. you had 109 people out of hundreds of thousands of travelers, and all we did was et those people very, very carefully. >> you would not do anything differently? some people did not know with the order was. pres. trump: that isis not what general kelly said. general kelly, now secretary kelly, said he was aware of it and it was very smooth. 109 people. amy: that is donald trump. your response, saira rafiee, and
also, your studies? you say your studies help you understand what is going on today. >> yeses, we have been studying psychology fascism for some years. i am really somehow shocked by the similarity between trump's literature and the content of his speeches to the propaganda american agitators of the 1940's and 1950's. what is going on there is that he is using the discontents of the people and their feeling of insecurity and powerlessness and their uncertainty about their future. it is targeting all of these feelings against people who are not responsible for its, who are victims just l like many of his audience.
that is what really worries me. i do not know w where this could end. i was shocked -- i listened to so many of his speeches during the primaries, and i was shocked by the lack of any kind of rational arguments. he does not talk about the causes of the problems, he just on thishe just focuses feeling of frustration among his audience. he is using muslims and immigrants as scapegoats. juan: i would like to ask hadi saying itu hear trump was only 109 people by the numbers of people affected by this ban are phenomenal. iranian students in the united states alonene, about 12,000 off them. i haveve heard as many as 1 17,0 universisity students are from e seven countries that are subjected to this temporary ban. your response to the 109 figure?
>> we're talking about hundreds of thousands of people over time. maybe there were 109 on the few flights coming in on a given day. there are 17,000 students from these countries.s. there are tens of thousands of people on work visas in this country from those seven countries, including the staff of my own organization that we now do not know what is going to happen when it is time for renewal. there are many people on green card, again, hundreds of it keeps of them, and changing -- the date on their green card keep changing all the time. we're talking about many being impacted. there is no rationality to this order. it was very important yesterday when judge robart asked the government lawyer in the court of appeals, what is the rationality and whatat is your fact for issuing this order? and they had none. they really had none. this is what is mind-b-boggling.
upending lives of so many people with no rationality. juan: this will be an unusual hearing at 6:00 today because one of the judges -- a three-judge panel -- one of them is in hawaii, another is in arizona, and one is an san francisco. they will be doing a telephone hearing, in effect. your expectation of the dish sherry, how it is handling it? >> it is extremely critical moment of the soul of what we call checks and balances of this country after the founding of this country is the judiciary cannot spanned does stand up to this irrational actions. a mori by the time the supreme court has been picked and completely tilted toward trump's preferences, we're going to have no institution to do checks and balances because congress is failing already. the republican party is compmpletely failing its own principles. in today's hearing will be a benchmark for where we are headed to. amy: we want to thank you both
for being with us, hadi ghaemi, with the campaign human rights in iran. and saira rafiee is a phd candidate at the cuny graduate center. i knew so much about you because it seems like the entire university was rallying to hide you to get you back to the united states. >> i am rereally grateful for al of those people on social media, .he union that i'm a member of as i said, i was fortunate enough to have the support of the union and i was a member of the union. i think in this situation, i'm committed more than ever -- convinced more than ever how important unions are. here in new york, there are so many students who have been fighting to get their right to have a union. the administration of the university's are denying them these rights.
i'm also aware of so many other cases whohose universities, schools are not supportive ascuny was to me. i'm really worried about these things because i think here, i mean, what is at stake is t the inindependence of academia. i think it is really necessary that the schools academia takes a step and tries to defend itits independence. amy: saira rafiee, phd graduate student at cuny graduate stududent. when we come back, stephen walt on donald trump's foreign-policy. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. juan: we turn now to look at president trump's emerging foreign policy. last week, trump reportedly abruptly ended a call with australian prime minister malcolm turnbull after complaining about the terms of a refugee deal between the u.s. and australilia. meanwhile, during a call with mexican president enrique peña nieto, trump reportedly threatened to send u.s. troops to mexico. speaking last week, the president urged d americans nono worry. pres. trump: when you hear about the telephone calls i'm having, don't worry about it. just don't worry about it. we have to be tough. it is time to be a little tough.
we're taken advantage of every nation in the world, virtually. it is not going to happen anymore. development the , middle east trump's national security advisor michael flynn notes the united states was putting iran on notice, but it's not clear what that means. meanwhile, trump's first covert operation in yemen went disastrously wrong -- one u.s. navy seal and as many as 23 yemeni civilians died as a result. leaders in europe are openly expressing concern about trump's actions including his apparent , close ties to russia. last week the president of the european council warned trump was a potential threat to the european union. amy: and trump is facing opposition even in britain. on monday, the speaker of the commons said he would refuse to invite trump to address the british parliament during trump's upcoming state visit, sobbing trumps racism and sexism. trump's racism and
sexism. to talk more about trump's foreign policy, we are joined by ststephen walt, international relations professor at harvard university. his recent piece in foreign policy headlined "trump has already blowown it." how has he blown it? >> i think you could argue t tht trumump had a an oppoportunity e was elected d to move an americn foreign-policy in a somewhat different direction, and it would have been -- there would have been substantial public support away from military interventionism, trying to get a more even distribution of labor with some of our key allies, working for economic arrangements that benefited main street as muchch as theyey bened wall strtreet. so hee could have done that. of course, he has d done the opposite. he has been picking fifights wih some of f our traditioional alls anand doing t that to no good purpose, with no real end in mind. he is an explicit totally -- inextricably continue to defend the bad behavior of vladimir putin and has a completely contradictory approach to the middle east that isn't likely to a college interview objectives we might had there. that is a lot to do in two weeks
and it is possible that there will be some quick corrections and they will get back on an even keel. as so far, this does not appear to be a foreign policy that is very promising, even for people who might have supported him. juan: professor walt, in this clip we play, his emphasis on being able to talk tough and this notion that the rest of the world is taking advantage of the united states. how is that played in the rest of the world? >> as you might expect, very badly. these initial phone calls are initially get acquainted phone calls with key leaders. for trump to essentially y picka fight t entry the prime miminisr of stralia ---- remembeber, ths is one of our clclosest alliiesn asia, who soldiers fought with ours in world war ii and korea, and vietnam, in iraq, and afghanistan. an fact, still have soldiers in iraq today. this is one of our closest allies.
to treat the prime minister there in their initial phone call with a certain degree of contempt played very badly in australia, as you money and -- but expect. fox hostnt to turn to bill o'reilly's super bowl interview with president trump. > p you talked toutitin last week. a busy week. d respectt putnin? pres. trump: i respect a lot of people, but that doesn't mean i'm going to get along with them . he is the leader of his country. i say it is better to get alolog with russia than not. if russia helps says in the fight against isis, which is a major fight and islamic terrororism all over the wororl, majojor fight, that is a good thing. will i get along witith him? i am no idea. >> putin is a killer. preses. trump: we have a lot of killers. you think our country isis so innocecent? you think our country is so innocent? >> i don''t know of any government leaders that are
killers. pres. trumump: well, take a look at what we have done to -- we are made a lot of mistakes. i've been against the war in iraq. >> mistakes are different. pres. trump: but a lot of people were killed. a lot of killers around, thank you. amy: professor stephen walt, your response? >> first of all, trump is correct, the u.s. has made a lot of mistakes in his foreign-policy a and some ofof e mistakak that had reaeal humaman consequences. so that is c correct. the problem here is that, first of all, he is equal in russisian behavior w with our behavior. i think there e are someme clear differences. more importanantly, h he's usinr mistakakes to excuse what russsa may bebe doing tododay. my mom used to tell me that two wrongs do not make a right. for him to essentitially say, well, it is ok what russia is doing, it is ok to prosecute, persecute, possibly murder journalists, it is ok to destabilizize other countries, t is ok to invade the sovereign territory of other countries,
etc., because after all, we have donene similar things, is not, t seems s to me, a constructive wy to approacach our rerelationship with russia. it is surly nonot a way to try d improve e our relations with otr countrtries. if we have made mistakes in the past, what we should be e doings learning f from them and not repeatingg them as opposed to using them as a way to excuse the behavior of countries that we have to deal with and we e he toto establish reasosonably constructive relationship, but one that is also based on neutral respect. i wouldofessor walt, ask about the situation with mexico. as you mentioned, trump did say often during the debates in his campaign he was against nation building, against some any foreign adventures. yet in one of his first phone calls with the president of mexico, he warns that if mexico does n not handle its situation, it's time situation, he may have to send in troops to do it for them.
claim, the white house claimed, this was merely a joke. this is not the kind of joke it seemems to me you want too make with a leader you do not know paparticularly well and where te long historic relationship with mexico has been troubled occasionally by american military intervention. it shows certain ignorance and a real insensitivity. i think it also gets back to this really quite absurdrd situation thatat trump got himsf into a claimining he was goingo build this wall and somehow going to get mexico to pay for it. this was a great applause line on the campaign trail, but it as a absolutely no sense foreign-policy position. mexico doeoes not want thehe wa. mexico has no interest in the wall. the e idea you're goioing to get ananother couryry to pay fofor something it d doesn''t want and has no interest in having just suggest you do not understand how sort -- suggests you do not
understand how foreign-policy works. amy: on the question of israeli settlements, last thursday, the white house said -- "while we do not believe the existence of settlements is an impediment to peace, the construction of new settlements or the expansion of existing settlements beyond their current borders may not be helpful in achieving that goal." this might have surprised many considering president trump's choice of the israeli u.s. ambassador to israel david friedman who actually heads up fufundraisising effort for one f the settlements, has raraised mimillions o of dollars. yourur response? >> first of all, i think the statement itself is just a lot of doubletalk. everyone understands the settlement project is an impepediment to appease. it is one of the mosost importat rereasons why itit is hard t toe a viable palestinian state. the fact that the settler movement in israel is dead set against any possibility of a palestinian state, position, i
thinink, also shared by the nenetanyahu government, just reaffirms this. to argue existing settlements are not a problem, but new settlements might be a a proble, justst does not add up. it doesn't make sense. i think what we see here is the trump administration has not really figured out what its position is on israeli-palestinian peace or even israel's relationship with -- its relationship with israel. yes, they will probably be war pro-netanyahu than any other previous american president has been, but i do not actually think they want to get involved in the peace process at all. a coupuple of times, trump has said he was going to tuturn his son-n-in-law jarared kushner ovr and put hihim this problem, ande would solve it. of course, this is someone with no foreign policy explains, no diplomatic experience as well. the bottom line is the trump administration is likely to be very bad for the palestinians, but also very b bad for i israes self b because in effect, they'e
going to a allow israel to continue too create an apartheid state in greater israel, and that is not in israel's long-term interest. juan: professor walt, i want to ask about the growing tensions with iran. the ban on the seven muslim nations, the o one that is most affected, iran, with some 12,000 foreign students here in the united states, but now national security advisor flynn putting iran on notice in terms of its missile testing. what is "on notice" mean? >> nobody knows what that means. the brand new we cared about their missile program. we have a contentious relationship with iran. there are groups in the united states and iran who would like to improve the relationship to try to build on successful agreement to cap their nuclear program, but they're also groups both in a ran in here in the united states whwho wantnt to mamaintain a relationship that s highly conflictual and maybe
want to go beyond that. it seems to me the trump administration is aligning itself witith those groups as well. once to raise the temperature with a ran. i think this is plane with fire in a number of respects. one thing we know about the rent is the do not partrticularly respond well to amamerican pressure. if we start threatening them militarily, if we start taking military action against them, that will give them an obvioious incentive to try to resestart their r nuclear program. and that then n places the u.s.n the position of f whether or noa genuinely was to o go to war to try to prevent that. i think the obama administration understood that path was notot e path we wanted to go down. i think we have e to worry now cocoming given the a attitude o. trump and s some of his closest advisers, ththat they actuallyle a conflict with h iran iss beinn the united states intererest. the big problem is they also seem to want to have a conflict with almost the entire islamic world while at the same time
getting some of the members of the arab were islamic world to help us with isis. again, this is just an example of where their policies are deeply contradictory and therefore, are unlikely to succeed. amy: finally, you just tweeted -- not "new theory -- you just tweeted -- that the media is intentntionaly covering upp terrorist attacks. >> there is no evidence of this at all. if anything, i think the problem of t terrorism evever since 9/1. it is why americans greatly exaggegerate the actual risk thereunder, the risk that americican states frorom just ak in the united states is astronomically small. sort of one chance in 4 million. there is a many other things